Welcome to the blog for Free Your Mind mental health anti-stigma campaign

This is the blog for the Free Your Mind campaign which aims to battle stigma towards mental illness through the use of music, art, film, and culture.
The blog consists of informative and, hopefully, entertaining articles/posts.
Enjoy! :-)

Friday, 22 June 2012

5 Signs of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Signs of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

A person with obsessive compulsive disorder usually has their mind stuck on a certain thought or image and simply can’t get their mind off of the thought or image, because it keeps replaying in their mind! That might be a lot to take in, but imagine being on the other end of this observation. If you think you or someone you know might have this condition, there are several helpful tips that can help you determine whether or not your hunch is on.

1. Anxiety Attacks 
Reoccurring anxiety attacks can be a sign that you have a compulsive disorder. Usually, when the brain or body is feeling many emotions at one time and does not know how to react, the brain sends out a warning system to the rest of our body, which causes us to feel anxiety. We experience anxiety because the brain is telling us we are in danger and need protection, when we may in fact need nothing of the kind. It might just be our mind stuck on one image or thought. Remember this if you’re feeling jumpy, anxious or worse.

2. Feeling without Reason
Another important sign to recognize is persistent feelings without justification. When you are feeling sad, angry, anxious or fearful for no reason, this may be because your brain is lying to you. If you are suffering from OCD, you brain wants you to feel these emotions, but it does not have a reason. It can be torturous actually, and don’t just brush off feelings like this.

3. Obsessions 
Typically, anyone with an obsession has a compulsive disorder. However, this doesn’t mean you need treatment. What does determine this is the severity. If you find yourself doing tasks or activities repeatedly throughout the day, and it’s inhibiting your ability to live your live, you have may have this disorder. If you find yourself thinking the same thoughts repeatedly, or become obsessed with a person, place or object and cannot get it off your mind enough to live life normally, you may need to speak with a physician or other specialist. For instance, many with OCD often are CONVINCED that they are sick with some serious illness when something small comes up, like a cough or a headache.

4. Inability to Socialize 
A person with OCD can sometimes have a hard time socializing, because they are too focused on the object or thoughts that are going through their mind repeatedly. The person is too focused to even think about other people in a room. People with OCD simply do not care about anything else other than the object or thought in their mind. Yes, the word obsession is quite literal here. Remember that people often don’t realize that they are being unreasonable.

5. Confusion 
Those with OCD also suffer from confusion. They aren’t able to focus on daily activities such as work or school, and may even forget they are supposed to be somewhere, take medicines for an illness, or even eat and bath daily. Sometimes, people with this disorder will not remember names, people or conversations with others. If you find yourself suffering from confusion like this and you’re not sure why, you could be suffering from OCD.

Bottom Line 

OCD is a varied disorder. There are numerous symptoms as diverse as the global population. For instance, other warning signs include feeling like you always have to be perfect, the fear of losing control, causing harm to yourself repeatedly, repetitive cleaning and pacing. The good news is that there are ways to be tested for OCD, and there are even more treatments out there that can help you. You just have to find the right doctor and therapist. Never be afraid to ask for help, or help out a loved one.

Bathilda Jorking writes about health, wellness, personal finance & www.homeequityloan.net

Thursday, 14 June 2012

What you should know about dyslexia

What You Should Know About Dyslexia

There are several things that a person needs to know about dyslexia. If a loved one suffers from this condition, read through the following info ASAP.

1. What is it?
Dyslexia is a combination of a Latin word meaning difficulty and a Greek word meaning words. Therefore, the word dyslexia means that a person has difficulty with certain words. However, it specifically refers to how some cannot read letters or words as they appear. Instead, they seem backwards. This can be very confusing, for example, when it comes to the word body. It is a LEARNING DISABILITY – nothing more and nothing less.

2. Family History
If a child has any history of dyslexia in their family, then they are more likely to have dyslexia. The chance of onset is about 50 to 75 percent more likely if only one of the parents has dyslexia. If one child suffers from dyslexia, then any siblings of the child are probably going to be dyslexic too.

3. What to Look Out For
There are certain signs that a parent should be on the look out for. Some signs of dyslexia are delayed language acquisition, trouble learning nursery rhymes, mispronouncing words, difficulty learning the names of letters and not knowing how to spell his or her own name. If a child has any of these signs and other kids their age do not, it would be worth consulting a doctor.

4. Misconceptions
There are many misconceptions about dyslexia that many people believe. For instance, the most common misconceptions are that people write words backwards, all have bad handwriting, are clumsy or tend to be left-handed. Many also believe that dyslexia can be fixed if a person starts to take vitamins. Most of the time, these myths will come from the lack of knowledge that people have about dyslexia.

5. Diagnosing Dyslexia
There is no actual test that a doctor can use to diagnose dyslexia, but there are plenty of tools that doctors can use to monitor children (and young adults) that they think might have it. If a child is older than seven, then they will have to go through several tests before the doctor is able to diagnose dyslexia firmly.

6. Treatments
Several treatments can be given to a child to help improve symptoms of dyslexia or at least help them to deal with it. Some of these treatments include educational planning, speech/language therapy, oral administration of tests and presentations in school, and even the use of electronic spelling devices. The best thing that a parent can do for their child is to get a tutor or a counselor with a specialty in the condition.

7. Help
Encourage anyone that you think might have dyslexia to get help. Let the child or adult know that just because they have dyslexia, it does not mean that they are not smart, crippled or anything else beyond dyslexic. Dyslexic people are normal too, and in this day and age, there are many tools to make their life just as successful, productive & happy as anyone else’.

Troy Glover writes about health, parenting & saving cash at www.dentalinsurance.net.

Guest posts contributed to Free Your Mind

The following two blog entries this month are guest posts which have been contributed to FYM.

Regular contributor, Nicola Edwards, will be back in July with "Understanding PTSD (Part-Two)."